Thom Allison to Play MCC Toronto, 11/30
Charisma, excitement, inspiration, power, plain old pizzazz and razzmatazz... emotion in all of its forms - this is the cyclonic wizardry Thom Allison unleashes whenever he hits the stage.
Thom, who currently is bringing down the house nightly as Nicely Nicely Johnson in the Shaw Festival's "Guys and Dolls," is a super nova in a class of his own.
People who saw his "Broadway, My Way" concert here at MCC Toronto last November, experienced first-hand his power as an entertainer. They can likely still feel the spine-tingling goose bumps.That night, he and Diane Leah blew out the walls. After all the money spent on renovations, it's a wonder the church is still standing! Multiple standing ovations with screaming, shouting and even tears greeted this acclaimed Shaw Festival star and his extraordinary musical theatre maven.
Thom returns to MCC Toronto next month on Saturday, Nov. 30th with a seasonal concert titled "Shut Up, It's Christmas." Joining him will be one of his favourite unknown celebrities, the alluring Lola Cruikshank. "People know who she is, they just don't know her and I thought it was time for everyone to meet this extraordinary woman", he said. Accompanying Thom on piano ... and his guests... will be the incomparable Diane Leah, his long-time associate and music director of MCC Toronto. Lola said "it's been a real treat coming out to make appearances with Thom, and "I'm so thrilled by audiences' responses." Special guest is the choral group Pride & Joy, comprised of members of The Choir of MCC Toronto.
This is the fourth and last concert in MCC Toronto's exciting "Two of a Kind" concert series. It has presented some of Toronto, and Canada's, most accomplished talents including Jackie Richardson with Micah Barnes, Sterling Jarvis and Heather Bambrick, and Marcus Nance with Jennie Such.
With a smile as wide and as bright as the Great White Way, Thom is a force of nature. We've all heard of nuclear fusion, the massive energy released when two nuclei combine. Well, this is musical fusion in the form of this sensational, intense, much-loved Canadian-born musical theatre star. "Shut Up, It's Christmas!" is a glamorous Christmas cabaret. Compared with last year's "Broadway, My Way," it's funnier, campier and crazier, yet still as exciting as ever. Christmas standards will be performed in a variety of ways. Some will be presented traditionally, some with a twist and some re-imagined all in the spirit of holiday fun. There also will be show tunes.
After speaking with Thom, who was born and raised in Winnipeg, perhaps the show should be titled "What I Did for Love." "I looooooove Christmas!!!" he enthuses. "I always have. I love the Christmas specials (movies, claymation and animated), I love the lights, the food, the get togethers...and the shopping! I love finding just the cleverest things for the right people. My mother always cooked a big Christmas Eve dinner for friends, and then another for family, either Christmas Day or the day after. They were such joy-filled times. She is a wonderful cook and would make mountains of amazing food. There would be laughter, talking and singing. I always felt so happy and warm and full of life. Those feelings have followed me through the years. Now, I try to spread them to everyone around me when the holidays come around. What a better way than sing songs. I love and make people smile, laugh and cry?"